New Year, New Stuff

I love buying stuff for my classroom. I like to reason with myself, saying that I need to get a lot of things now so that I don’t have to buy them later. Every year I am wrong. Here are some of the things I found for my classroom that the kids are enjoying in class!

First things first, Target is the best. I love color and they did not disappoint this year!

I am spoiled with having a great local teacher’s store down the street….I NEEDED a tiger puppet, ok?!

Our school is adventure and travel themed this year and I was so excited! Maps are awesome so I bought a bunch of different ones!

And you can’t forget manipulatives…thanks to Target and IKEA!

 

Then you have to decorate…

This was the unpacking stage of back-to-school. Check out those beautiful colored bins from Target! They are so useful!

Not everything was new…I raided my parent’s house and brought back all my old books and animals. Mom was happy to have it out of the house, I’m sure.

I even recruited Krista…she did an awesome job on my book display while I messed around with new costume parts.

Everything now has a place. The bass bars were up for the storm so they don’t take all my table space usually.

My instruments have parking spaces! (The junk in the pile went to another school)

A decorative shelf AND bulletin board this year?!

This is what I thought I would has as a bulletin board this year…

Then I ended up with two more! Here is one I think I will keep up most of the year. The other one will change. It says “Music is a Universal Language” then the colors are different types of music around the world.

 

Now, just don’t ask how many pounds of pumpkin and cat erasers I have in my possession…..

 

THIS YEAR IS GOING TO BE GREAT!

 

 

Surviving The First Weeks

I was so excited for a new school year! I bough tons of stuff at Target (post to follow), laminated everything that stood still and revamped everything for my room. We had just around 2.5 weeks of in-service (I had to do new teacher orientation since I started in January). On Friday before school was set to start, the teachers were sent home because of the impending storm.

Then came Hurricane Harvey.

I was fortunate where I live because I did not have any damage. Houston and the surrounding areas got over 50″ of rain in 3 days time. People were being rescued in boats where there were normally traffic jams. It was a huge mess, but everyone worked together to make a bad situation a little lighter.

We finally started school two weeks later and I was SO EXCITED to see my kids. We weren’t sure what would happen on the first day since so many families were displaced, but this year has been great! We just finished our second week and music class has been rocking!

My third, fourth and fifth graders have been learning about instruments and ensembles. I have continued my choir and added a drum ensemble and they are pumped to join both of those groups. I am recruiting kids to be in band/orchestra/choir in middle school, plus getting them excited to sing and play instruments in class.

My babies (K-2) have been learning how to use their voices, dance, and play instruments. They have so much energy that I put my head down on my desk after Kindergarten. They are fun, but I have never started fresh kinders before…they’re babies! We dance and sing and move and do poems and pretend, and after that, we still have 40 minutes of class! 🙂

Kinder learned about the 4 voices: Whisper, Talk, Shout and Sing. On day 1, they learned with Sharkee (original name, trademark Kinder red group). He gave them examples and they responded. On day two, we used whisper phones to call up Buc-ee and ask him questions. We also learned “Deep in the Heart of Texas” because Buc-ee is the unofficial mascot of everything Texas.

and of course, we did an instrument cakewalk. Throw on some music, march around the circle and play the heck out of some jingle bells. They love it!

Our next rotation is fall themed! I’ll update on how it goes…it doesn’t cool down for fall here, so I anticipate a weather lesson incorporated into music class. 🙂

 

Posted in K-2

Classroom Theme Reveal!

New State, New District, New Classroom, New Expectations

Man, am I excited.

We are in the process of taking one district and adding it to another district, which means we are starting everything over. New beginnings are allowing us to basically start from the ground up to create an excellent school.

My administrators (who are awesome) have challenged us to decorate our rooms to the extreme, like the Ron Clark Academy (look it up, the rooms are amazing.)

We each got to pick a theme and no two rooms could be the same. I was alerted of this via a phone call while I was blue crab fishing with my sister so we immediately for to work thinking of a theme.

Fishing in Galveston

Fishing in Galveston

With Krista’s help, we decided on something.

Vintage Airstream Camper

Why? Because it’s different. Because I had tons of space. Because no one else would think of it. Because “Under the Sea” was probably taken.

We took the idea and ran with it. I started Pinteresting and didn’t find much; apparently it’s too different! 

I was lucky and found an awesome Teachers Pay Teachers post of vintage campers in every color. Thanks to RebeccaB Designs for my inspiration! Her post can be found here.

I have been working at home for about 6 weeks and in my room for 2 days and will post the entire classroom tour when it’s before-school finished! (We all know it will change before kids actually get in the room.) 🙂

Emptiness=Possibility. Bring it on.

Emptiness=Possibility.
Bring it on.

Texas Teachin’

I’m Back!

Last fall, I was lucky enough to be a blogger for the K-State College of Education. I loved talking about my journey as a (basically) first year teacher. Since then, there has been a lot of changes.

In February, there were lots of rumblings about Kansas not starting school in the fall because of the lack of budget. As a music teacher (or specials/extracurricular as people say), I started to worry that my subject would be cut and I would be out of a job. Luckily, it didn’t get that bad, but I started to look elsewhere for a job. After some life changes earlier in the school year, there was nothing holding me back from picking up and moving somewhere else. By “else” I mean south.

I took a bit of advice from my mom and applied in Texas. All over Texas, actually. In February and March, I applied for dozens of jobs from band to choir to mariachi from Corpus Christi to Amarillo. One job stuck out to me; not only because it was a clean slate opportunity, but also because it was ten minutes from Galveston. Grading papers on the beach sounded a lot better than shoveling snow!

In March, I was hired as a middle school choir director in the great state of Texas. I would be moving to southern Houston to teach in a great district. I resigned from my position in Lansing, packed up my classroom (LMS was set to move to the “NEW” middle school), and moved 1200 miles away to League City, Texas, a suburb of Houston.

I have been here since the middle of June and I absolutely love it. It is hotter than the surface of the sun, but the abundance of fresh Mexican food, super friendly people and a short drive to the ocean makes it all worth it. I have fully embraced the move and have surrendered my Kansas citizenship to become a Texan. Sorry Kansas, love you but….Texas.

TexasGreat

I have had such a warm reception here; I have found a great church on Galveston, been working with a P.E.O chapter on the island and have a super supportive school staff. I couldn’t have asked for a better place to be.

deepintheheart